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ISGM Podcast: The Concert #9 - Beethoven’s Violin Virtuosos

The “Kreutzer” Sonata is loved by audiences for its thrilling range of emotions and displays of technical daring. For violinists, though, the piece is extremely difficult. Beethoven was urged to write the piece by English violinist George Bridgetower, and the two played the premiere together. Beethoven was so thrilled with Bridgetower’s playing that he actually ran across the stage to embrace him in between movements in the middle of the concert. Elated with their successful debut, Beethoven dedicated the piece to Bridgetower after the recital. Later that evening, though, Bridgetower made a disparaging remark about a woman Beethoven knew. Enraged, Beethoven withdrew the dedication, instead dedicating the piece to Rudolphe Kreutzer, a famous Parisian violin virtuoso, giving the sonata the name it’s had ever since. Ironically, though, Rudolphe Kreutzer never actually performed the “Kreutzer” sonata. Upon receiving the manuscript in Paris, he declared the piece impossible to play. In this program, we’ll hear violinist Corey Cerovsek prove him wrong.

Recorded live in the Tapestry Room of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston.

The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is pleased to share this concert under a Creative Commons Music Sharing License. For details see


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